The highly anticipated cross-sport showdown will take place in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on October 28, 2023.
Heavyweight boxing champion Tyson Fury will face Francis Ngannou, one of the top heavyweight fighters in mixed martial arts (MMA), in a boxing match held under professional boxing rules in Saudi Arabia on October 28, 2023.
The announcement of this cross-sport fight was made on Tuesday after months of increasing speculation, especially since Ngannou left the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), the world’s leading MMA promotion.
Fury’s team stated that there would be “three judges ringside adopting the 10-point system” in the fight held in Riyadh. However, the number of rounds to be fought by both fighters is yet to be determined.
The last fight for the heavyweight world champion was in December when he stopped British boxer Derek Chisora in 10 rounds, but talks of an undisputed world title fight against Ukraine’s Oleksandr Usyk fell through in March.
Fury, who was born in the UK to an Irish Traveller family, is known as the “Gypsy King” (GK).
“This man is considered the hardest puncher in the world, but let’s see how he reacts when he gets hit by the GK,” Fury said, referring to Ngannou. “I can’t wait to get back in action under the spotlight.”
Ngannou has built a reputation as a formidable puncher on his way to capturing the UFC heavyweight title, a title he held until leaving in January after a contentious relationship with UFC President Dana White.
The Cameroonian fighter has won 17 out of his 20 professional UFC fights, with 12 knockouts, but MMA stars like Conor McGregor, Anderson Silva, and Tyron Woodley have previously struggled when transitioning to the boxing ring.
Ngannou discussed the cross-sport fight with Fury after Fury defeated Dillian Whyte in April last year.
“I’ve been waiting to meet Tyson in the ring for the past three years. My dream has always been to box, and to box with the best,” he said.
“After becoming the undisputed heavyweight MMA champion, this is my chance to fulfill that dream and solidify my position as the baddest man on this planet.”
The WBC stated that they would not be involved in this fight, with Fury being granted a “special permit” for a non-title bout as he does not have any mandatory challengers.